Dogs are wonderful companions for many individuals and families throughout Florida. They can provide love, company, fun and protection. It is important to make sure that dogs are trained properly and given the basic social skills necessary to keep from being a danger to others. Although the majority of dog owner are able to keep their pets in line, many others neglect their animals and fail to adequately develop them into the animal that everyone loves.
When this happens, the potential for injuries resulting from a dog bite increase exponentially. They may not be a naturally aggressive dog, but fear, anxiety and the instinct to protect themselves may manifest in a way that endangers humans. No matter what the case may be, a dog bite or attack is inexcusable and must be dealt with in the proper manner. If you or a loved one was injured by a dog bite and/or attack, you are likely eligible for compensation.
A dog bite can range from minor to gravely serious. When injuries develop into costly issues that take your attention and resources away from what is important, you have the legal right to demand that the individual or party responsible pay for these costs in the form of damages.
At The Law Offices of James B. Coulter we focus on personal injury cases that were caused by reckless or careless actions. This includes going after the owner of a dog that has bitten another. This often times involves finding and making a claim with the at fault party's home owner's insurance policy. As the owner of an animal that has bitten or attacked another person, they can be held liable for the actions and for the harm that their dog has caused. Addittionally, in the state of Florida, the owner of a dog can be held strickly liable for damages and injuries that an attack or bite has caused to an innocent victim. When dogs act out and hurt others, the owner should be held accountable. At the Law Offices of James B. Coulter we use a straightforward and fact-based approach that focuses on pinpointing the events leading up to the injury and how the property owner or dog owner is legally responsible for what transpired. We have handled dog bite cases for years in Brevard County and have collected hundreds of thousands of dollars for cleint's who have been the victim uf such unfortunate and terrible events. Our team includes private investigators who are trained and have expierence recreating the facts surrounding these cases and you can be sure that you are in good hands should you choose our firm to represent you.
As previously stated, In the State of Florida, the prosecution of a Dog Bite case enjoys a strict negligence standard of liability. The strict negligence standard of liability for Dog Bite cases is codified in Fla. Stat. 767.04 and states as follows:
Fla Stat. 767.04 Dog owner's liability for damages to persons bitten.- The owner of any dog that bites any person while such person is on or in a public place, or lawfully on or in a private place, including the property of the owner of the dog, is liable for damages suffered by persons bitten regardless of the former viciousness of the dog or the owner's' knowledge of viciousness. However, any negligence on the part of the person bitten that is a proximate cause of the biting incident reduces the liability of the owner of the dog by the percentage that the bitten person's negligence contributed to the biting incident. A person is lawfully upon private property of such owner within the meaning of this act when the person is on such property in the performance of any duty imposed upon him or her by the laws of this state or by the laws or postal regulations of the United States, or when the person is on such property upon invitation, expressed or implied of the owner. However, the owner is not liable, except as to a person under the age of 6, or unless the damages are proximately caused by a negligent act or omission of the owner, if at the time of any such injuries the owner had displayed in a prominent place on his or her premises a sign easily readable including the words "Bad Dog." The remedy provided by this section is in addition to and cumulative with any other remedy provided by statute or common law.
Our comprehensive approach to representation will allow you to focus on getting better while we handle all aspects of your case. We are confident in our abilities and have proven throughout the years that we are a proactive, aggressive, and knowledgeable legal team that truly has our client's best interests in mind.
As a Melbourne based law office, we are conveniently located in Central Florida with two different locations to provide legal counsel for individuals and families throughout the state of Florida and around Brevard County, and all other Florida Counties. These areas include cities where we have handed and/or are currently handling cases includes Palm Bay, Melbourne, Titusville, Rockledge, Cocoa, Satellite Beach, Indian Harbour Beach, West Melbourne, Cocoa Beach, and all other neighboring areas. Should the distance to our office be too much of a burden for you and your loved ones we are happy to provide transportation or in the alternative, come to you at your residence to discuss your potential claims.
If you have been the victim of a dog bite, before hiring an inexperienced attorney, please take a moment to schedule a free consultation with James Coulter of The Law Offices of James B. Coulter to ensure that you are dealing with someone that has experience handling dog bite cases and who has received hundreds of thousands of dollars in compensation for previous claims. Mr. Coulter is happy to assist you and help you determine your rights as well as the available remedies that the laws in the state of Florida offer to you. Be assured that should you request, you can and will discuss your case with Mr. Coulter directly, rather than a paralegal and or an attorney's assistant. If you feel that you have a valid dog bite injury claim, please call us at (321) 586-9944 or send an online message today.
Knowing how to act around dogs is important. They are extremely perceptive creatures that take visual cues in a different manner than humans. Slight movements or moments of uncertainty will trigger a dog to act in an instinctive way, possibly leading to aggression. The following are tips that are geared primarily towards children (who are easily the demographic most prone to bites), but can be used by adults as well:
Identify - The first step you should take after a dog bite is to identify the dog. Find out who owns the dog or where the animal lives. If the dog is a stray and you cannot identify it, you may be forced to undergo a series of rabies shots.
Seek medical care - Depending upon the severity of the bite, contact first responders (9-1-1) for medical attention or have someone drive you to emergency care. Always seek medical care after a dog bite. The risk of infection from a dog bite is far too great to ignore.
File bite report - File a bite report with your city or county animal control or Sheriff's department. This provides legal documents for your case. Without a paper trail, authorities cannot enforce effectively.
Gather information - To protect your future rights as a victim, obtain the name and address of the dog owner, in addition to the dog license information.
Photograph injuries - Take photos of your injury. It is recommended that you photograph all of your wounds, including bruises, as well as torn, bloody clothing and the location of the attack.
Contact attorney - Contact a dog bite attorney now -- not later. The issues surrounding dog bites are complex and difficult to navigate through. Your dog bite lawyer (or personal injury lawyer) is the only person besides the doctor that treats your wounds who will look after your best interest from this point forward.
There are many different types of damages that can be pursued in a dog bite injury. These damages will likely contain both economic and non-economic costs. Some of the most common when it comes to dog bites include:
Humane Society – This link send you to the dog bite prevention for kids page within the Humane Society website. It offers a great deal of information on dog bite statistics, safety tips, the roles of parents and proper behavior.
Dog Safety – Clicking on this link will send you to the dog bite page on the Doggone Safe® website. Doggone Safe is an educational site that aims to teach children and parents how to treat dogs properly and stay safe while in their company.
DogBite.org – This link directs you to the dog bite victim page of within the dogbites.org website. This page has information on trends and statistics, dog bite studies, dangerous dogs, legislating dogs and staying safe.
With 4.5 million people bitten by dogs every year in this country, this is an issue that is quite prevalent. Owner negligence is a prime contributor to this number. Even individuals acting in a safe and defensive manner may also be subject to possible injury.
When this happens, it is important that you protect your health and financial interests by working with an attorney who has the experience and legal knowledge to help you identify the negligent party and prove the way in which they contributed to your medical issues.
Not only will we handle the argument and implementation of your legal strategy, we will do so at little financial risk on your part. Our firm operates on what is called a "contingency basis", which means that we will only collect legal fees based on performance. This dedication to helping you through this difficult time is proof that our interests are directly aligned with yours.
We proudly offer our legal services throughout Central Florida, including the cities of Melbourne, Palm Bay, Satellite Beach, Merritt Island, Titusville, Viera, Cape Canaveral, and Port St Lucie, among others. We offer free initial consultations for clients, so if you would like to discuss the details of your case and go over possible legal options with an attorney, please call (321) 586-9944 or send an online message today.